A friend of mine once asked, “why do l often catch a cold or flu?”. This is despite his regular intake of Vitamin C and several other preventive measures he claims he adopts.
Everyone can come down with a cold once in a while. Infact experts claim we can have 200 bouts of cold in our lifetime.
Having a cold or flu can be annoying but a regular intake of Vitamin C will not stop you from getting a cold.
Basically, if you take vitamin C, you’ll get just as many colds as you did before, but they may be slightly less severe.
While the weather plays a major role in the high incidence of cold or flu during this period, frequent exposure to germs that cause cold may be the reason why you often have a cold.
However, certain habits and lifestyle can make you less susceptible to catching a cold.
Researchers claim if you are the type of person who gets stressed easily, then you may also be more susceptible to illness.
According to the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, over time, severe stress can wreak havoc on your immune system and leave you twice as likely to catch a cold.
Research suggests people who exercise regularly have a reduced chance of getting ill – possibly because it boosts their immune system.
A study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found feeling fit and being active cuts the risk of having a cold by almost 50 per cent.
Even when participants were ill, having an active lifestyle benefitted them.
The research showed it cut the severity of the illness by 41 per cent among those who were the fittest and 31 per cent among those who were the most active.
Regular hand washing:
Washing your hands as often as possible could help you to stay well.
Research suggests that, on average, we touch our faces 16 times each hour. This transfers bacteria from dirty surfaces to our mouths, eyes and noses.
Here are a list of some things that harbour germs that we touch almost everyday:
1. Money: Germs that cause cold, acne to microbes from people who lick their fingers when they count out bills can be found on the notes you spend. Until you have the option of being totally cashless, wash up after you handle that cash.
2. ATM: People from anywhere and everywhere touch buttons on the cash machine. You don’t know if the last person that used the machine before you had a cold or flu.
3. Remote Control: Your remote control can harbour a lot of germs since everyone touches it — even your neighbor’s child with the runny nose! Daily wipe clean with antibacterial wipes.
4. Shopping cart: The shopping cart handle you use when you go for shopping can harbour several kinds of bacteria. Always wash your hands after shopping.
Getting enough sleep:
If you only get less than 5 hours of sleep at night your chances of catching a cold is four and a half times greater than that of someone who sleeps for seven hours a night according to research in the medical journal, Sleep.
The secret to staying well may also have something to do with diet. If your body isn’t getting the right nutrients, your chances of falling ill increases.
Eating a healthy, varied diet can help to boost your immune system, therefore increasing your chance of fighting off viruses.
Although controversial but research shows that regular sex increases levels of immunoglobulin A (IgA) – an immune system protein that defends against colds and flu.
However, if you think your case is that bad, consider taking the flu vaccine after seeking medical advice.